Masters of Architecture Collection


Immerse yourself in the work of Le Corbusier, Mies van der Rohe and Carlo Scarpa. Each volume presents their most important works, supported with drawings and photographs.


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Price: USD$425.00 USD$295.00


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About the book

This collection includes:

Le Corbusier: Ideas & Forms: The definitive single volume study of the Modernist master Swiss-French architect Le Corbusier by the world expert and award-winning architectural historian William J R Curtis.

It is impossible to understand the architecture of the twentieth century and of our own time without first coming to terms with Le Corbusier (1887–1965). His buildings can be found from Paris to La Plata to the Punjab and his influence has extended over several generations worldwide. Individual masterpieces such as the Villa Savoye at Poissy, the Chapel of Notre Dame-du-Haut at Ronchamp and the Parliament Building in Chandigarh, bear comparison with the works of any age. As well as an architect, Le Corbusier was also a painter, sculptor, urbanist and author; even a philosopher who ruminated upon the human condition in the modern era. He reordered the ground rules of the architectural discipline and invested his insights with a universal tone.

This probing study of Le Corbusier’s work explores the interactions of ideas and forms in his individual buildings and in his oeuvre as a whole. By penetrating the design processes of his major buildings it reveals the architect’s struggle to reconcile the ideal and the practical and to give clients’ aspirations and society’s institutions a suitable symbolic form. It analyses Le Corbusier’s phenomenal powers of imaginative synthesis, the recurrent elements of his architectural language, and the multiple levels of meaning in his projects. In turn it shows how this most ‘modern’ of architects drew inspiration from both nature and the past.

Mies: Ludwig Mies van der Rohe is one of the twentieth century's most influential architects. His most well-known projects include the Barcelona Pavilion in Spain (1929); the Seagram Building in New York (1954-56); the Farnsworth House (1945-50), 860 and 880 Lakeshore Drive (1945-51) and the IIT Campus (1939-58), all in and around Chicago, and the New National Gallery in Berlin (1962-68). These are only a few of Mies's pavilions, houses, skyscrapers and campuses, which all epitomized a radically new structural and spatial clarity.

The purity of his Mies's architecture is almost surprising in light the diversity of his interests. An auto-didact, Mies studied philosophy and science as well as design. Author Detlef Mertins, spent over ten years researching and writing this comprehensive monograph. In addition to traveling to see the buildings and reading nearly everything written by and about Mies, Mertins also conducted a detailed study of the architectural, philosophical and scientific literature in Mies's own library. The result is a lucid text that not only gives the reader detailed insight into all of Mies's work, but which also explores the variety of ideas that influenced this exceptional figure. The scholarship is rigorous, but the accessible writing and the highly visual, project-by-project presentation also invites those readers who possess an interest in the topic, but who lack detailed knowledge in it.

Carlo Scarpa: Italian architect Carlo Scarpa (1906-1978) is a unique figure in the Modern movement and even today his work continues to challenge accepted notions of modern architecture. While intensely revered as an architect of immense detail and consideration, no comprehensive monograph has been produced on this scale to date - nothing that approaches the breadth and depth covered by this title.

With an illuminating text by Robert McCarter, who has developed a reputation and following for his meticulously researched, experentially-based, and jargon-free accounts of key figures in Modern architecture, this book provides the definitive study of Scarpa's many accomplishments, including such works at the Canova Museum, the Castelvechhio Museum and the Brion Cemetery, among others.




In The Press

Le Corbusier: Ideas & Forms:

"The most lucid and complete chronicle yet available of Le Corbusier’s achievement and (in the words of his title) the ‘ideas and forms’ which successively and cumulatively account for its significance. It is, then, as incise narrative … illuminated by penetrating critical commentary that this book excels"
—Times Literary Supplement

"This book is an admirable as well as well-timed introduction to Le Corbusier. In it much recent scholarship has been pulled together and presented in a lively account of Le Corbusier’s life and work... it is also a record of personal observation and synthesis by an informed and shrewdly sensitive author which will remain valid and fresh in the long term."
—Architectural Review

Mies:

"Puts Mies’s work back at the center of the architectural debate."
—Barry Bergdoll, Acting Chief Curator of Architecture and Design at MoMA

"A formidable commitment to understanding both the man and the work."
—John Pawson

Carlo Scarpa:

"With 350 images and drawings, Carlo Scarpa documents the architect’s dramatic modernism – the sweeping red staircase of his Banca Popolare in Verona, his sleek concrete-and-wood Olivetti showroom in Venice – even as it celebrates his poetic vision."
—ELLE Décor




About the author(s)

Le Corbusier: Ideas & Forms: William J R Curtis is an award-winning historian, critic, writer, curator, painter and photographer. Educated at the Courtauld Institute and Harvard University, he has taught the history of architecture and theories of design at many universities around the world including Harvard, the Architectural Association and the University of Cambridge where he was Slade Professor of Fine Art (2003–04).

Mies: Detlef Mertins (1954–2011) made lasting contributions to the theory and history of modernism in architecture, art, philosophy, and urbanism. From 2002 to 2007, he was Professor of Architecture and Chair of the Department of Architecture at the University of Pennsylvania. He also taught at the University of Toronto and, as a visiting professor, at Columbia University, Harvard University, Princeton University and Rice University. Among his many published books are Modernity Unbound (2011); G: An Avant-Garde Journal of Art, Architecture, Design, and Film, 1923–1926 (2010), co-edited with Michael Jennings; The Presence of Mies (1994) and Metropolitan Mutations: The Architecture of Emerging Public Spaces (1989). Mertins also published numerous essays in scholarly journals and anthologies, as well as critical writings on contemporary architecture.

Carlo Scarpa: Carlo Scarpa (2013); Understanding Architecture, co-authored with Juhani Pallasmaa (2012); Louis I Kahn (2005); On and By Frank Lloyd Wright: A Primer of Architectural Principles (2005); Frank Lloyd Wright (1997); Unity Temple (1997); and Fallingwater (1994), all by Phaidon Press. He has also published Wiel Arets: Autobiographical References (2012); Frank Lloyd Wright: Critical Lives (2006); and William Morgan: Selected and Current Work (2002), among other books.



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